In December 2005, some of Sydney’s surfing beaches were sites of what politicians and the press called “race riots.” After a gang of Lebanese Muslim youths had assaulted a volunteer lifeguard at Cronulla Beach, a gang of Anglo-Australian youths tried to assault a number of young Lebanese men, but police arrived in time to minimize the violence. The following night, a convoy of one hundred cars driven by Lebanese Muslim youths drove across the city to Maroubra Beach where they spent a considerable time vandalizing property and parked vehicles. Police arrested many of the Anglo-Australians but very few of the Lebanese rioters. Indeed, the police hierarchy told its officers not to interfere with the Lebanese motor convoy lest their actions inflame the situation. Nonetheless, the immediate police response at Cronulla did mean that the violence was contained to three days and never extended beyond the beachfronts of two suburbs. Compared to th ...